Billy Hamilton leaves game after injuring hand on diving catch

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UPDATE: Mark Sheldon of MLB.com passes along word that Hamilton sprained the third and fourth knuckles of his left (glove) hand on the catch. No word on how much time he’ll need to miss.

7:41 p.m. ET: Billy Hamilton left tonight’s game against the Brewers in the first inning after he suffered an apparent injury when he robbed Carlos Gomez of extra bases on a diving catch. You can watch the excellent play here.

Hamilton managed to finish the top half of the inning, but was replaced by pinch-hitter Chris Heisey when the Reds came up to bat in the bottom of the first. No word yet on the exact nature of the injury, but we’ll pass along an update when it’s available.

Hamilton started the season very slow, going hitless over his last five games, but he entered play tonight hitting .280/.310/.378 with five extra-base hits, six RBI, and 11 stolen bases over his last 21 games. Here’s hoping it’s something minor. Hamilton is a lot of fun to watch. And as we saw tonight, it’s not just because of what he does on the bases.

Indians sign Melky Cabrera to a minor league deal

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The Indians have signed free agent outfielder Melky Cabrera to a minor league deal. The pact is pending a physical.

Cabrera, 33, went unsigned this past offseason after putting up a season of .285/.324/.423 with 17 homers and 85 RBI with the White Sox and the Royals.

Cabrera will report to Columbus once he passes his physical and, according to Paul Hoynes, there are no guarantees being made to him that he’ll get playing time. That said, the Indians aren’t getting much outfield production from anyone besides Michael Brantley, and Cabrera’s status as a switch hitter would give Terry Francona some flexibility, so it would not be shocking to see him on the big club after some reps in the minors.